Federal Green Party candidate Laura Reinsborough says she feels her chances of winning in the local New Brunswick riding of Beauséjour on October 21 are much stronger because provincial voters elected two Greens here in last year’s provincial election.
“The ice has been broken,” Reinsborough said during an interview Friday in her Sackville campaign office.
“It’s huge really to have two Green MLAs,” she added, “within a federal riding. That doesn’t exist in too many places across the country and I really feel like that has made a huge difference.”
“I go door to door and there is so much Green support; there is such an exciting momentum for the Green Party which continues to grow as we see the Green numbers grow across the country.”
Latest averages from the CBC Poll Tracker show the Green Party at 9.8% nationally, but also in double digits in both B.C. at 15.6% and Atlantic Canada at 12.7% with a minority government headed by either the Conservative or Liberal parties most likely at this point in the campaign.
Reinsborough says that if Canadians do elect a minority government, it would make a huge difference to have more Green MPs.
“Not only might we hold the balance of power, but in a minority government things can move a lot faster,” she adds. “Instead of having the two old-line parties bickering about this and that, we can really see that we will work together to advance important action.”
Reinsborough, who is the director of Food For All NB — a provincially funded network for groups working on making sure everyone has enough to eat — says she decided to run for the Green Party because she sees this as a crucial election, especially when it comes to adopting policies that would avoid the worst effects of climate change.
“We know what the numbers look like. We don’t have very long to make dramatic changes,” she says.
She refers to a section of the 2019 Green Party Platform called Mission Possible, a climate action plan that outlines extensive measures for dealing with what the platform calls the climate emergency.
It includes such steps as a 60% cut in carbon emissions over the next decade partly by switching away from burning fossil fuels and relying on renewable energy sources; banning the sale of fossil-fuel powered passenger vehicles by 2030 and making electric cars more affordable; investing in passenger rail transportation networks, and launching a massive program to make buildings more energy efficient.
“We know that the transition to a green economy is not going to happen overnight,” Reinsborough says, referring to another section of the party platform. “We need it to be done with good jobs, with our health care needs taken care of and making sure everybody is part of what that future can look like.”
To read the entire 82-page Green Party Platform, click here.
‘Conserver society values’
Reinsborough also refers to the Green Party promise to embed what it calls “conserver society values rather than consumer society values” in the transition to a green economy.
“That’s a bit of a mentality shift which I think is already happening,” she says.
“We see that people are trying to reduce their plastic consumption, they’re trying to repair their appliances rather than toss them and get a new one, we see that people are making those changes in their individual lives, in their households, in their communities,” she says.
“There are so many young people who are making those changes. This is the new way of thinking,” she adds, “and yet we need to see that our government keeps up with that.”
Reinsborough says, for example, that the federal government could require manufacturers and retailers to cut down on excessive packaging.
“That’s a role that the federal government can play to be able to move towards that conserver society which is culturally where we’re heading anyways, but we need our government to keep up,” she adds.
“This is part of why I’ve decided to run in this election.”
To read Laura Reinsborough’s Green Party biography, click here.